Hi, I’m Tony and this is the story of why I started Papa Tont.
“Becoming a father is easy enough, but being one can be very rough.” – Wilhelm Busch
This didn’t start out as a “daddy blog“. I am a serving soldier and married father of a little girl and boy, but I’m so very tired of having to live up to the expectations of the world when it comes to being a husband and dad; competing with society on who has the best raised kids and whose marriage is strongest takes its toll. Not just this, I’m exhausted. For years I’ve been trying to satisfy a wife and boss who have very different views on what’s expected of me when it comes to work life balance. Something had to give, and unfortunately it was my mental health. I suffered from depression and a therapist said to write things down, it would be cathartic. So I created Disillusioned Dad.
I wrote about how I struggle being a ‘dad’ and the regrets that came with it; there was no spark of infinite joy when my children were born, there was no choir of angels flooding me with this overwhelming sense of love that I had been promised. What was wrong with me? Why didn’t I love my kids as much as everyone else appeared to? The truth was that many of my friends didn’t feel it either but they felt so guilty about it they lied to the world. Disillusioned Dad was a diary of the truth showing just how “very rough” life as a husband and father could be. I hoped that it would somehow heal me, and help others accept their own feelings too.
On Papa Tont I still blog with frank and deep honesty about how hard life can be, I’ve just accepted that it isn’t the way it has to be. Only I can change it; how I feel and how I act are entirely my choices, however some choices are harder to make than others. That said, this blog isn’t designed to be a motivational platform from which to teach others how to be a better person or father; it is purely here to show you that you’re not the only one struggling with life. Everyone does at some point.
As the blog has grown I’ve strayed slightly from its original purpose and may have sold out a little. I accept product endorsements, advertising, review opportunities, and brand collaborations, but it is a small part of what makes this blog mine and I write about them in an honest way. All of my collaborations are written with the theme of family life in mind and will not simply be shoe-horned in where they can. Never influenced or told what to write, you can trust that my opinions are my own. In the main there are three key areas that I blog about:
Surprise, surprise, when my kids were born I had no idea how to be a dad. I was fortunate enough to have a father in my life, but that didn’t mean I had all the answers, merely an insight into his style of parenting. This category chronicles the struggle of me coming to terms with being a dad and showing just how rough I have found it.
Time To Let Her Roam Free – At what age do you trust your children enough to let them go it alone?
Are You A Parent Or A Friend? – Do you have to categorise yourself as one or the other, or can you be both?
A Bit Of A Rant – Disillusioned Dad is never really far away, and it doesn’t take much to bring him back.
I Am The Dad Who… – Trying to differentiate between ‘how’ I am and ‘who’ I am when it comes to being a parent.
Learning To Love My Son – The lessons I’ve learned over the few short years my son has been alive.
No-one ever told me how hard marriage would truly be. I had been blinded by Hollywood; all of the talk of endless passion and romance set marriage on a pedestal that it could never recover from. This category peeks behind the curtain of matrimony and shows you that a marriage not only takes work, but patience, compromise, and tolerance to survive. Not many qualities that I possess.
Melancholy Man – Whilst being fed up of the social media humble braggers, I reflect on the negatives of marriage.
Nobody Likes Doing The Dishes – I try to do things I don’t like to do because I know it makes my wife happy. I was wrong.
Superlatives – My perception of what is said, and what is actually said, are two very different things.
Whose Job Is It To Make Me Happy? – Only I can decide how I react to the influence of others.
Compromise – Why do I feel like compromise is just me doing what my wife wants all the time?
7 Thoughts From 7 Years Of Marriage – Some lessons learned from our fledgling time together.
Physical culture goes beyond simple health and fitness, it is the study of cultural attitudes towards all aspects of the human body. As a soldier health, fitness, and nutrition have fascinated me, but I have learned that not everything is as black and white as I used to believe. If you’re a dad wanting to get rid of a dad bod, check out the #GetDadsFit Facebook page; if you’ve managed to shift your dad bod, share your story there too.
How To Stay Fit While Watching TV – Even couch potatoes don’t have an excuse anymore.
What Gym Goer Are You? – A satirical look at the people I see in the gym.
My Terrible Relationship With Food – A look at serotonin and how I am quite simply addicted to carbs.
How To Set Goals – Using the SMARTER method of goal setting can you achieve more?
What’s In A Number? – Does it matter what the scales say, or is there a better way to measure your progress?
Why I Am So Fat – A look at how the Army judge body composition and cortisol’s role in how fat I am.